How to Get Honest Feedback on Your Business Idea

This week I want to share an amazing tip for getting honest feedback on your business idea.

When you’re considering launching a new business, one of the most important things you can do is get out there and ask everyone what they think of your potential business idea. You want them to poke holes in it so that you can see if your amazing idea is actually amazing or if you might be the only one that thinks it’s super cool. The trouble is, most people, especially those close to you, are too polite to tell you if they think your new business idea, which you’re so excited about, is crappy. Now, I know, some people will always give it to you straight no matter how much it might hurt your feelings and those are people you definitely want to talk to, but what should you do if the people you know who fall into your potential target market are more softies than straight-shooters if they think honesty would hurt your feelings?

Well, months ago I was at an Entrepreneur Magazine conference and the speaker, Jon Levy, shared an awesome tip for how to make sure you get the truth, but it requires a bit of deception. That’s right, in this case, if you want the truth, you need to lie.

Here’s what you do, instead of going to someone and saying, “I have this new business idea and I’m super excited about it, what do you think, is it a good idea?” you should go to that same person and say,”this startup company that does xyz wants to hire me; do you think it’s a good idea that has potential to be really big or would you steer clear?”

If the person you’re talking to isn’t concerned that s/he might hurt your feelings, you’re more likely to get a totally honest answer about what they think of the idea and the company’s chances for success, and you need honest feedback, not sugar-coated feedback. It might be hard to hear, but if there are glaring issues with your idea it’s way better to know that upfront than to get a bunch of faux positive feedback, spend a ton of time and money, and then finally hear the truth once you’ve already failed.


If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, the best thing you can do for yourself is to just get started. Pick up my business planning ebook here to be guided through the whole business planning process for less than $5. More of a video person than a text person? Click here to try my ecourses instead.

11 Replies to “How to Get Honest Feedback on Your Business Idea”

  1. the people who are close to you most likely will choose a polite answer, but a solid business plan and some basic market research can help you determine weather your business idea is actully worth investing in. No one should start a business without business plan, in some cases it’s not even possible to do that, in order to obtain loans or to register a company.

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